Sunday 7th November 2021

Welcome to our Worship at Home for 7 November.


‘This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. ‘

Opening Prayer

Yes, Lord, we have every reason to rejoice and be glad, because it is Sunday, a break from routine, when we can remember once again your great goodness to us. You created the universe and us, you sent your Son to be our Saviour, and you have implanted eternal life in us. We rejoice and we are glad in your presence. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Our hymn is Mission Praise 307 ‘I will enter his gates…’

I will enter his gates with Thanksgiving in my heart

I will enter his courts with praise

I will say this is the day that the Lord had made

I will rejoice for he has made me glad

He has made me glad; He had made me glad,

I will rejoice for he had made me glad

He has made me glad; He had made me glad,

I will rejoice for he had made me glad

Today’s reading is Mark’s Gospel chapter 12 verses 38-44:

As he taught, Jesus said, ‘Watch out for the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and be greeted with respect in the market-places, and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honour at banquets. They devour widows’ houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. These men will be punished most severely.’

Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few pence.

Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything – all she had to live on.’


Here’s a good question for a Bible quiz: In which of the Gospels do we find Jesus’ saying, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Matthew? No. Mark? No. Luke? No. John? No. It is in fact in Acts, chapter 20, verse 35. They are words of Jesus not actually recorded in the Gospels. And how many more there must be!

But now to today’s reading. The poor widow gave her all. Is that an example for us to follow? Well not really. She lived in a different society – not a welfare state. Beggars were not despised, but seen as presenting an opportunity for virtuous acts, and where without embarrassment family members and neighbours would help out.

But she did give an example: giving should be sacrificial. It is so easy to admire the wealthy and how wonderful they are when they donate massive amounts to charity, and to think how little we can give in comparison. But we need to remember that our little added to the little of others, can amount to much. ‘Many a mickle makes a muckle.’

And the widow’s example to us is that our giving should be proportionate. Does it make a difference to us? Is it sacrificial? Our giving to church and charity should take something away from us that we would otherwise use for our enjoyment. Jesus commended the widow for her proportionately small offering because it was sacrificial. That’s her example. I say no more. But also remember: ‘God loves a cheerful giver.’

So we come to our prayer time. Let us pray…

Lord, you have made us stewards of our own wealth, whether great or small. Help us to be responsible in our stewardship. And we thank you for the privilege of being able to give to help others. We offer to you the contributions in money and time we have given and are giving to the life of the church. Help us always to continue to be cheerful givers. We all have particular causes we like to support, local, national and international. We remember them before you in the silence… [pause]…  Bless them in their work, we pray.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord, you have appointed us, humankind, stewards of the earth you have created. We confess to you that we are not always good stewards, and as individuals we are implicated, caught up in that. Help us to tread gently on the earth.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We think, Lord, of the COP26 Conference now drawing to a close in Glasgow. We pray that wise decisions be made in its closing sessions, and afterwards that governments will have the will and determination to implement them. We praise you for the beauty of the earth. May it be passed on enhanced to generations yet to come.

Lord, in your mercy, hear of prayer.

Lord, we think of our immediate friends and family, Some are in special need, through bereavement, illness, heavy responsibilities or in some other way. We remember them now by name in the silence…[pause]…

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Finally, Lord we think of Christ Church. As our activities begin to return, guide the elders and leaders of organisations, we pray, so that our church life can be safely and sensitively resumed,

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Finally, Lord, we commend ourselves to you as we go into the coming week. Keep us safe. Keep us faithful to you, always giving you thanks for the greatest gift of all, your Son, Jesus.  And let us live to your praise and glory. We pray in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.


A blessing

The peace of God, that is beyond all understanding guard your heart and your thoughts in Christ Jesus. Amen.

                                                                                                                                    Revd Tony Coates

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